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Basic data

developer Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger
Publishing year 2010
Current  version 138.0 ( iOS )
April 25, 2020

123 ( Android )
December 17, 2019

operating system Windows 10 , Windows 10 Mobile , Android , iOS
category Share photos and videos
License Freeware
German speaking Yes

Instagram is an ad-funded online service for parts of photographs and videos, which to Facebook belongs. Instagram is a mixture of microblog and audiovisual platform and enables photos to be shared in other social networks .

To use Apps for Windows 10 , Windows 10 Mobile , Android and iOS are available. Users can edit their photos and videos and apply filters . Based on the Kodak Instamatic and Polaroid cameras, photos and videos made with Instagram originally had a square shape.


Logo until May 11, 2016
Instagram effect: photo on the right with a filter
Typical filter that makes images appear richer in contrast

The application was developed by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger , who created their HTML5- based check-in software burbn in San Francisco . They subsequently expanded burbn to include photos and finally published Instagram in the App Store on October 6, 2010 . On the server side has been proven on a number of open source solutions such as Ubuntu Linux, nginx - Web server , Django and PostgreSQL with PostGIS set. Instagram is hosted on Amazon Web Services . Well-known internet investors like Andreessen Horowitz and Sequoia Capital , but also Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey , are among the investors who got on Instagram early on .

On April 3, 2012, Instagram was also released for mobile devices with the Android operating system .

In the same month, Facebook announced that it would take over Instagram for a billion dollars (€ 760 million). At the time, Instagram had twelve employees and no earnings model . The announced purchase price of one billion dollars is far more than was ever paid for the acquisition of a digital photo service. For example, Google Inc. acquired Picasa for $ 5 million in 2004 and Yahoo Flickr for $ 30 million a year later . When News Corporation bought Photobucket for $ 300 million in 2007 , it was considered a record amount. Ultimately, about 737 million US dollars went to the Instagram owners in September 2012, of which 300 million were in cash and 23 million were Facebook shares; The reason for the lower total was the lower share price since the Facebook IPO in May 2012 (issue price approx. 38 US dollars, price at the beginning of September 2012 approx. 19 US dollars).

Due to its takeover by Facebook, the short message service Twitter blocked direct access to Instagram content through the Twitter API in July 2012. This made Instagram the second major platform after LinkedIn that was blocked by Twitter.

At the beginning of November 2012 the so-called web profiles were activated. For the first time, these offer users of the service the opportunity to present their images publicly in the form of a personalized website . The function is judged as adapting Instagram to the structure and concept of Facebook.

Instagram caused a sensation in December 2012 with the announcement of new, controversial data protection guidelines , some of which were reversed after user protests.

Instagram has been available in a beta version for cell phones with the Windows Phone operating system since November 2013 . A possibility to record and publish videos does not exist in this version. A new version of the app was released for Windows 10 Mobile in July 2016, which now supports almost all functions that are also available in the iOS and Android apps. Only the Instagram stories are missing in this version.

On April 29, 2015, Instagram presented a new music stream under @music . It presents photos, lyrics and videos from artists, musicians and fans from all over the world. It all started with Roots drummer Questlove .

In April 2017 it was announced that the Instagram app will get an offline mode with almost all functions from the online version.


Photo collage of an image edited with 16 different Instagram filters.

Version 2.0 was released in the App Store in September 2011 . It contained some changes such as instant tilt-shift , four new filters, a higher resolution of the photos, optional frames, a new app icon and the live filters, which were removed in 2012.

In mid-August 2012, Instagram presented version 3.0 of its app, which, among other things, introduced numerous innovations in the interface. The biggest innovation was the introduction of a geotag function , through which the user can arrange his photos on a map that can also be viewed by other members of the platform.

From version 3.5, which was released in May 2013, it is possible to tag other people in your photos and to display photos on which you have been tagged on your own profile. On June 20, 2013, it was announced on the Instagram blog that Instagram can now also be used to film square videos with different filters.

In December 2013, Instagram Direct made it possible for users to send photos and videos only to individual users or a group of users. The last revision of the web app was carried out in early September 2012. Since then, the mobile website has been geared more closely to the scope of the iOS app, functionality and interface have also been aligned with the classic web app. As of December 2013 there are 19 selectable photo filters and 13 video filters.

Since iOS version 6.0, released on June 3, 2014, you can change the strength of the image filters. There is the new option of a vignette and the colors can be adjusted more. In addition, there were other, minor changes to the photo editing. Uploading pictures and videos has also been made easier, and there are follow-up recommendations.

The new Stories function was introduced in August 2016 . Instagram Stories makes it possible - similar to Snapchat - to share pictures and videos for 24 hours with friends and followers without these pictures appearing on the user's Instagram profile. You can also add text and emojis to these images in advance and apply some filters to the images.

Instagram TV ( IGTV ) has been available since June 2018 . With IGTV it is possible to upload videos with a duration of up to an hour. Instead of the conventional 16: 9 format, the 9:16 format is used here. Since June 28, 2018, the app has allowed music from the Instagram music library to be added to the stories in selected countries. Watching the videos on Instagram TV is also possible without downloading the IGTV app. IGTV videos can be watched via the regular Instagram app. For this purpose, a button was integrated on the app's start screen, which enables the user to go directly to the respective IGTV videos. On Instagram TV, users automatically see the IGTV posts of the channels they are already following.

In May 2018, Instagram introduced augmented reality filters, which make it possible to provide photos and videos with a virtual mask and effects using tracking and room recognition technology. They are mainly used for face filters. Since August 2019, Facebook has released the Spark AR Studio tool for all users, with which it is possible to create your own AR filters.

On June 23, 2020, the Reels function was activated for more than 20 million users in Germany, with which it is possible to publish short videos with a maximum length of 15 seconds and to add a selection of audio tracks. With this function, Instagram is based on the competition app TikTok and wants to activate the function for all user accounts later.


Number of users

In December 2010 Instagram had one million registered users, in June 2011 it was five million, in July 2011 10 million and in April 2012 over 30 million. The growth continued to develop strongly and so on September 11, 2012 Mark Zuckerberg announced that Instagram now has over 100 million registered users. According to its own information, Instagram reached 100 million monthly active users in February 2013. By September 2013, this number rose to 150 million. By April 2015 the number of members grew to over 300 million, by June 2016 to over 500 million. In June 2018 it was announced that the number rose to 1 billion active users.

Number of photos

Instagram announced in July 2011 that the limit of 100 million uploaded photos had been exceeded, in August it was 150 million. In December 2013 it was 16 billion, according to the company, with an average of 55 million photos uploaded every day. In August 2014, Instagram counted 20 billion images in total and 20 million new ones daily. According to the latest statistics from 2016, more than 40,000 photos and videos are uploaded every minute, making almost 60 million posts a day.

The rapid growth of the platform was also due to the fact that numerous well-known brands began early on to maintain their own profiles on Instagram.

commercial use

Since July 2016 there has been an option in the app to convert your own profile into a business profile ("business account"). Such an account gives you access to special statistics, you can create advertisements directly in the app and add contact options. Initially only in the United States and since 2015 also in Germany , advertising is now placed between the posts in the form of photos or videos. These are tailored to the user and his preferences. Since mid-March 2018, German Instagram users have also been able to shop on the picture platform. You can get prices and product information by tapping on marked products for sale on the pictures (visual shop window).

Since the professional accounts, Instagram is also suitable for journalistic contributions. The stories in particular can be used to create reports on events, advice or product tests as well as background reports.

Statistics on business accounts such as the development of the number of subscribers can be viewed on the Social Blade platform .


Instagram can also be used by third-party providers for web, desktop, mobile and tablet applications as well as services that enable non-members to view and print Instagram photos via the API provided. Although Twitter no longer allows direct access to Instagram, photos of the service embedded in tweets can be displayed directly within the web app.

Since the acquisition by Facebook, the integration of Open Graph has been driven forward. Since Instagram 2.5 for iOS and 1.1.4 for Android, it is possible to automatically transfer activities of the service to the Facebook timeline.

At the end of 2012, users reported problems integrating Instagram with Twitter . The operators of both services then confirmed that Instagram no longer uses the Twitter Cards interface in order to increasingly display images on its own website in the future. Experts assessed this measure as a sign of increasing competition between Facebook Inc. and Twitter Inc.

Instawalk and local groups

Instawalk describes a walk together , during which Instagram users capture motifs and moments in their photos and tag them with the appropriate hashtags . These often take place as part of a so-called InstaMeet . At the end, the photos and videos should be compiled from different perspectives and an exchange between the participants should take place. As of April 2014, there were nearly 2,000 local Instagram groups.

Instagramability describes a special place where a photo or selfie will generate a great response on Instagram.


With the data protection declaration introduced in December 2012 , Instagram allowed itself to share user content and information, for example from cookies , device IDs , location or usage data from the parent company Facebook Inc. and its services. According to information from the company, this should serve to better integrate Instagram and Facebook. Above all, the fact that Instagram granted itself extensive usage and exploitation rights to the uploaded images of its users was viewed critically. Due to the ongoing public criticism, Instagram suspended the relevant passages a few days later and thus largely reset the terms and conditions to the old status.

As Instagram announced in March 2015, the order of the photos that are visible in a user's timeline was changed by June 2016. Until then, the display was strictly chronological. An algorithm now determines the order. The change in the order of the contributions has been criticized many times. Many users asked their followers to turn on mail notifications to make sure they see updates. Instagram responded with a tweet to the users, but did not change the algorithm. There is also no possibility to individually switch back to a chronological display of the contributions.

Longest-reaching Instagram profiles

(As of December 2019)
rank Account Followers Follow average
(per month)
Follow average
(per day)
1. instagram 319 million 983 Th. 32.7 thousand
2. cristiano 191 million 1.4 million 49.1 thousand
3. arianagrande 168 million 278 thousand 9.2 thousand
4th therock 163 million 4.7 million 159 thousand
5. Selena Gomez 162 million 1.1 million 36.8 thousand
6th kyliejenner 160 million 1.5 million 50 thousand
7th kimkardashian 158 million 1 million 34.3 thousand
8th. beyonce 135 million 1.2 million 42.1 thousand
9. leomessi 137 million 2.8 million 96.5 thousand
10. neymarjr 129 million 1 million 33.6 thousand


Web links

Commons : Instagram  - collection of pictures, videos and audio files
Wiktionary: Instagram  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations

Individual evidence

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